There’s a lot about this city to love. Here are just a few Milwaukee things, large and small, that make me grateful.
1. I get to see a Great Lake every day. When I was in grade school, we took a class trip to see the progress on the reproduction of the classic schooner the Denis Sullivan. The tour guide was really, really excited about his job, and I remember him, at one point, saying these words (and they stuck with me because I thought it was weird): "I can’t believe I’m lucky enough to live on and work with the Great Lakes, and to learn something new about them every day." My thought, at the time, was that this guy needed a girlfriend, or at least cable TV. But now I get it. Seeing the lake on my drive to work just makes my morning better.
2. Coffee. Alterra and Stone Creek never fail to make my day at least 13 percent better.
3. The insane amount of bars within walking distance from your apartment. You know it’s true. And it’s glorious.
4. UWM. Yeah, I’m an alumnus and probably biased – deal with it. There is world-class education to be had at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. The School of Architecture and Urban Design is one of the best in the nation, and the same goes for the program at the Peck School of the Arts – even the smaller programs are fantastic. Take a class from Tim Crain at the Center for Jewish Studies or Robin Pickering-Iazzi in the Italian Department and you will never, ever regret it. The English Department employs prestigious writers like Liam Callanan and Valerie Laken and scholars like Dr. Kristie Hamilton – and I’m sure the sciences and math departments are great, too; I just wasn’t fully conscious in any of those classes. And with affordable rates for auditing classes, UWM continues to educate the community as a whole long after the days of house parties and dorm life are over.
5. Irish Fest. What? I can be thankful for it in November. I am thankful for Irish music and the tasty, tasty Tipperary Tea Room year-round.
6. The Brewers. I personally know zilch about baseball and whenever I go to a game I get confused and freaked out when everyone starts booing, because I don’t know why and it makes me feel like I’ve personally done something wrong. But Braun & Co. make a lot of people in my life very happy, especially my future husband Matt. Plus, I like the Brew Crew colors, and now that I am becoming a Baseball Wife and am obligated to wear jerseys, their fan gear is really cute.
7. The plethora of Pabst Brewery memorabilia around town. My grandpa worked for Pabst for 40 years, and he passed away in 2008. He was fiercely loyal to "his" company and every time I see a Pabst sign, shot glass or other piece of miscellany, I think of him. So the city is full of reminders of my grandpa, who I miss every day.
8. The Buffalo Hunt diorama at the Milwaukee Public Museum. No reason, really. It’s just one of those things I thought was cool when I was a kid and so will forever be fascinating to me.
9. Location, location, location. We’re four hours away from Door County if you want to get your rural retreat on. Two hours from Chicago if you need a dose of the big-city atmosphere. Four hours of scenic driving from my all-time favorite weekend getaway, Galena, Ill. Day-tripping is a breeze, and the best part is you always get to come home to Milwaukee.
10. OnMilwaukee.com and its readers. I think you guys all rock pretty hard.
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